9th Annual CMAOntario Awards held their September 5th, 2021, 2nd Drive-in Awards show, Ancaster Fairgrounds in the Hammer.
September 5th, 2021 was the magical night for the 9th Annual and 2nd Drive-In Country Music Association of Ontario Awards which took place at the Ancaster Fairgrounds in Hamilton, hosted by Jason McCoy and Beverley Mahood. Featured entertainment with performances by Tim Hicks, Robyn Ottolini, Sacha, The Western Swing Authority, Kelly Prescott, David Boyd Janes, Aaron Allen Music, Peterborough’s songbird Elyse Saunders, and so many more.
The Country Music Association of Ontario (CMAOntario) is an Ontario-based, province-wide, not-for-profit organization. The objective of the CMAOntario, through the leadership and experience of our Board of Directors, is to celebrate, foster and support the growth and development of Ontario’s country music community and all those associated with the Ontario country music infrastructure – provincially, nationally, and internationally.
“MAKING ONTARIO COUNTRY MUSIC MATTER”
The CMAOntario represents the interests of recording artists and independent, owner-operated music businesses in Ontario. The Association was incorporated without share capital under the Corporations Act (Ontario) on March 25, 2010 and prior to being incorporated, the CMAOntario operated as an unincorporated not-for-profit entity formed in 2008.
The CMAOntario works continually with passion and dedication to develop opportunities and initiatives to expand the infrastructure necessary to help Ontario country music artists and small and medium-sized enterprises compete in today’s ever-changing competitive marketplace.
Through its programs, CMAOntario:
• educates and encourages creativity;
• celebrates the unique achievements and contributions of the Ontario industry;
• provides its members with a hub for information and resources;
• facilitates connections and communications among members and between them and industry leaders and stakeholders
Although initiatives are targeted toward the CMAOntario membership, they are also designed to advance the entire country music industry province-wide.
The ongoing successful careers of artists like The Reklaws, Tim Hicks, James Barker Band, River Town Saints, Jason Blaine, Jason McCoy, Cold Creek County, Genevieve Fisher, Jessica Mitchell and Meghan Patrick are just a few examples of how the CMAOntario’s dedicated undertakings have translated into positive results.
By investing in the potential of artists that continue performing today, the CMAOntario is laying a solid foundation to build sustainable careers for tomorrow. With a position of respecting tradition and recognizing past artistic successes, it is preserving, conserving and enriching the heritage and legacy that continues to shape Ontario’s country music identity and resiliency.
Through the leadership and experience of the Board of Directors, the Association aims to:
• Foster and support the growth and development of Ontario’s country music and industry
• Develop opportunities for Ontario artists, creators and all those associated with the Ontario country music industry
• Provide its constituency with the necessary tools to build their music careers and businesses and to promote Canadian music interests throughout the world
• Boost the economic activity of members by providing them with opportunities to showcase before new audiences and industry leaders
• Provide access to industry leaders, key buyers and timely information on developing trends and technologies in a domestic forum that benefits the greater industry’s interests
• Aid in making business-to-business introductions
• Produce timely comprehensive development sessions that feature industry leaders
• Promote Ontario artists/creators and musical content to other markets through partnering with and attendance at other industry events provincially and nationally
• Provide a platform for members to promote their latest projects and performances through the CMAOntario newsletter, website and social media channels
• Recognize and celebrate the achievements of Ontario artists and content creators through the annual CMAOntario Awards, thus strengthening their ability to maintain a sustainable career
• Encourage cultural diversity, gender equality and ensure inclusivity in all opportunities and initiatives
The original organization was formed under the name of the Ontario Country Music Association in May of 2007, by Rob MacArthur, founding patron Linda Wright and a number of interested and enthusiastic individuals who thought it was time to have a voice for country music in Ontario: the “talent” including songwriters, musicians, bands; and the “industry” including radio, management, publishers, booking agents and record companies.
They identified a strong need for educational workshops and resources to strengthen each area of this growing industry.
One of OCMA’s first orders of business was to set up a website for communications, news feeds and other forms of communication with members as well as the general public. One of the key features of the original website was an internet radio station featuring members’ music, although it has since been discontinued.
The first board of directors was established in October 2008. Barry Haugen was President, Anya Wilson was Vice President, and Drew Allen was Secretary-Treasurer. The other directors were Terry Fernihough, Bruce Good, Bill Hart, Peter Linseman, Rob MacArthur, Heather Ostertag, and Bob Wilson.
Shortly thereafter, it was decided to adopt a new name – “Country Music Association of Ontario” or the “CMAOntario” – to avoid confusion with a defunct organization operating under the old name. The Country Music Association of Ontario was incorporated without share capital under the Corporations Act (Ontario) on March 25, 2010.
The CMAOntario attracted membership through showcases or Open Stages as they were known. The first showcase was in Oshawa and the second at the Gibson Guitar Center in Toronto in 2008. Since then it has expanded to incorporate seminars and “Demoramas” at which both members and non-members critique members’ music.
The CMAOntario continues to grow its membership and to assist in the career development and education of as many of its writers, performers, musicians and music industry people as possible. In May 2014, CMAOntario held its second annual Awards Show; and in November 2014, it will host its first two-day educational seminar “The Road to Independence” which will also offer showcasing opportunities.
In order to garner support for the organization in its early days, a Founding Sponsors Program was launched. The initiative was limited to 10 companies who would be recognized in perpetuity as the Founding Sponsors of the CMAOntario. It’s with tremendous gratitude that we thank each of them.
SEPTEMBER 5th, 2021, brought the creme de la creme of Ontario Country music talent with showcases that featured the magical musical stylings of Peterborough’s Elyse Saunders, David Boyd Janes, Sacha, and Hamilton’s The Redhill Valleys, Kelly Prescott, Reney Ray, Aaron Allen, Buck Twenty, and The Western Swing Authority.
Congratulations to Patrice Whiffen for receiving the Holly & Steve Kassay Generous Spirit Award! @PatriceWhiffen
SINGLE OF THE YEAR
“All I Can Do” – Buck Twenty
“F-150” – Robyn Ottolini
“Girls Like Me” – Meghan Patrick
“No Truck Song” – Tim Hicks @timhicksmusic
“Thank Her For That” – Owen Barney
ALBUM OF THE YEAR
All Woman – Nicole Rayy
Highway Mile – Aaron Allen @AaronAllenMusic
Jade Eagleson – Jade Eagleson
Love Wins – Kelly Prescott
The I’m Not Always Hilarious EP – Robyn Ottolini
SONGWRITER(S) OF THE YEAR
Callie McCullough, Scotty Kipfer – “After Midnight”
Recorded by Callie McCullough
Owen Barney, Alyssa Reid, Dave Thomson, Mike Wise, Jamie Appleby – “Thank Her For That”
Recorded by Owen Barney
Meghan Patrick, Jobe Fortner, Ryan Nelson – “Girls Like Me”
Recorded by Meghan Patrick
Robyn Ottolini, Mark Schroor, Erik Fintelman – “F-150”
Recorded by Robyn Ottolini
Tim Hicks, Bruce Wallace, Jeffrey Coplan – “No Truck Song”
Recorded by Tim Hicks
FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
4th consecutive year in a row – WINNER Meghan Patrick @MegPatrickMusic
MALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Aaron Allen @AaronAllenMusic
David Boyd Janes
GROUP OR DUO OF THE YEAR
Buck Twenty @BuckTwentyBand
Jess and Tay
The Western Swing Authority
FRANCOPHONE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Les Rats D’Swompe
RISING STAR OF THE YEAR
Robyn Ottolini @RobynOttolini
MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR
“All I Can Do” – Buck Twenty
“Broken Boys” – Nicole Rayy
“Girls Like Me” – Meghan Patrick
“No Truck Song” – Tim Hicks
“Where I’m From” – The Reklaws
James Barker Band
Steven Lee Olsen
RECORD PRODUCER OF THE YEAR
Dustin Olyan – Callie McCullough, Twin Kennedy, Mallory Johnson
Jeff Dalziel – Aaron Allen, David Boyd Janes, River Town Saints
Mark Schroor, Erik Fintelman – Robyn Ottolini, Alexa Goldie, Cory James Mitchell
J. Richard Hutt – Jamie Warren, Sean Hogan, Jessie T, Tianna Woods
Shawn Moore – Ben Hudson, Matt Teed, Emily Clair, Evan Farrell, Emily Kate
ROOTS ARTIST OR GROUP OF THE YEAR
The Abrams @TheAbrams
The Good Brothers
The Redhill Valleys
The Western Swing Authority
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR (LARGE MARKET)
CHKX KX 94.7, Hamilton
CIKZ COUNTRY 106.7, Kitchener
CJKX KX 96, Oshawa
CKDK COUNTRY 104, Woodstock @Country104
CKKL PURE COUNTRY 94, Ottawa
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR (MEDIUM MARKET)
CFCO COUNTRY 92.9, Chatham
CHCQ-FM COOL 100.1 FM, Belleville @cool100fm
CJQM COUNTRY 104.3, Sault Ste. Marie
CKQM PURE COUNTRY 105, Peterborough
CKXC COUNTRY 93.5, Kingston
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR (SMALL MARKET)
CFDC COUNTRY 105, Shelburne
CHAW COUNTRY 103, Little Current
CHVR PURE COUNTRY 96.7, Pembroke
CICX PURE COUNTRY 106, Orillia CONGRATS 2 my birth town on their win tonight. @PureCountry106
CJDL COUNTRY 107.3, Tillsonburg
CKYY COUNTRY 89, Welland
MUSIC INDUSTRY PERSON OF THE YEAR
Amanda Kingsland, Country 92.3/Rogers Communications
Dave Woods, In The Country
Randy Owen, Radio Host/Personality
Steve Coady, Warner Music Canada
Tommy KW Lam, Reve Music Group Inc.